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Taxidermia
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Synopsis for
Taxidermia (2006) More at IMDbPro »

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The focus of Taxidermia is mood, tone and visuals rather than a specific plot narrative. The summary presented here relays the events in the film, but the manner in which they are presented in the film is equally if not more important that the events themselves. This summary should not be considered an adequate substitute for the experience of actually watching the film.

Note: Hungarian names in the film and this summary are in "Eastern order" (family name first.)

Morosgovnyi Vendel (Csaba Czene) is a lowly soldier/orderly stationed at a remote Hungarian farmhouse in WWII. The farmhouse is occupied by Lieutenant Balatony Lajoska (Marc Bischoff), his obese wife (Viktria Kiss), and their two teenage daughters. Morosgovnyi lives in a crude shed with pigs and spends much time having sexual fantasies about the young girls, typically while spying on them, masturbating or experimenting with his remarkable ability to shoot flames out of the end of his penis.

Following the slaughter of one of the hogs, Morosgovnyi is propositioned by Mrs. Balatony who pulls Morosgovnyi down upon her in the wooden bathtub containing the pig carcass. They have vigorous and loud sex, with Morosgovnyi fantasizing that he's actually screwing the Balatony daughters. Upon finishing, Morosgovnyi falls asleep and it is apparent that he was fantasizing the entire encounter while actually copulating with the dead pig.

The next morning, Lt. Balatony kicks open the door to the shed, and shoots the slowly awakening Morosgovnyi in the back of the head, blowing his brains out. Mrs Balatony subsequently gives birth to a very large, fat baby. The lieutenant examines the boy lying in the wooden bathtub and discovers a pig-like tail on him. Without speaking a word, he retrieves a pair of pliers from the shed, calmly snips off the tail, and slaps the boy on the rump.

Thirty years later Balatony Klmn (Trcsnyi Gerg) still has his tail stump, and has grown into a hefty professional speed eater. In an stadium full of cheering fans, Klmn and his friend Miszlnyi Bla (Koppny Zoltn) compete for Hungary against the Russian team, shoveling huge spoonfuls of offal and other disgusting material into their mouths in an attempt to finish their enormous helpings first.

Narrowly losing the initial round, Klmn is berated by his uncle/coach for being distracted by Aczl Gizi (Stanczel Adl), the women's speed-eating champion who is present in the audience and cheering for both him and Bla, who also fancies Gizi. During the break between rounds, Klmn and Bla trade jibes over Gizi while casually regurgitating the meal they have just gorged themselves.

After wiping their mouths off, the competitors face up to the next round - chosen by the Russians to be a giant blob of gelatin/fat with various disgusting animal parts congealed within. Still distracted by Gizi, Klmn suffers an attack of lock-jaw, and - unable to get the spoon out of his mouth - collapses backwards.

Bla visits Klmn, who is recovering in hospital with an enormous scar on his chest, Gizi by his side. Bla and Gizi blatantly flirt yet Klmn appears not to mind, instead savoring the drop of sweat that falls onto his face from Gizi's hairy armpit. At his subsequent wedding to Gizi, Klmn sings a folorn song about unrequited love while Bla convinces Gizi to "elope" with him. The "elopement" consists of taking her outside and drunkenly screwing her from behind while she looks through the window at her husband.

We next see a sports factory where fat young boys are apprenticed to a government program to develop world-class speed eaters. Seated at an enormous trough of semolina, the stern coach blankets the trough with a few scoops of cocoa powder before starting the boys off on their training. In an office above the factory floor Klmn is in training and is frustrated. Just at the time when he is attempting his professional comeback from injury, the International Olympic Committee has refused to recognize sport eating. While vomiting into a recycling machine, he complains to his coach.

Gizi discovers that she is pregnant. Her and Klmn's joy is obvious, but they are concerned by the Communist rules which require pregnant women to be reassigned to a particular factory which would negatively affect her calorie intake and thus her competitiveness in sport eating. They bribe the obstetrician, who gives them a choice between "cyst" and "myeoma" as a diagnosis which will apparently enable special treatment.

While on holidays at the seaside, the famous Klmn and Gizi are playfully suggesting names for their child when they are "invited" aboard the yacht of a visiting Russian dignitary. Before boarding, a flunky explains that they are expected to give a demonstration of their sport. Specifically, this involves eating 45kg of caviar (with a few bacon hocks thrown in) within 20 minutes. Gizi clearly struggles, perhaps concerned for the baby. Beneath decks, Klmn supports her by reminding her of her previous glories. Back upstairs they are expected to attend dinner, but Gizi is so sick that she passes out face-first onto her plate.

Another thirty years pass. We see Balatony Lajoska (Marc Bischoff), - painfully thin - at work at his taxidermy business. Cluttered throughout with various animals, the workshop shows a man who is dedicated to his work. Lajoska leaves his shop and travels to the grocery store where he purchases a huge volume of butter and chocolate. He is obviously smitten by the checkout girl, who ignores his creepy attempts at making eye contact. Lajoska visits the apartment of his father Klmn, who is now a ridiculously immense naked blob of shapeless flesh. The chocolate bars are for Klmn, who boasts that by leaving the silver wrappers on he can increase his intake from 400 to 570 per hour. The butter is for Klmn's super-sized cats, who lurk menacingly behind iron bars in their porcelain-tiled lair.

Klmn clearly despises his son, partly because of his profession ("carcass stuffer") but mostly because he is so skinny. Lajoska endures a barrage of insults from his father as he cleans the house and the cage. Klmn is too fat to move and even needs his son to change his bedpan for him. Klmn's life revolves around his enormous cats and his television, which he swears at while watching his former wife Gizi coaching an American champion speed eater.

Back at his taxidermy shop, Lajoska is asked by a dapper businessman for his help regarding a special project. "Domestic or wild?" The businessman smirks and admits "Domestic". Peering into the customer's paper bag, Lajoska nods and accepts the work.

Again at the grocery store, the same shopping list and the same uncomfortable stare at the checkout. At Klmn's apartment, his father needles Lajoska with continued insults. When he calls his son "cyst", Lajoska angrily confronts him about how ungrateful he has been. The two get into a terrible argument, throwing chocolate bars at each other. Lajoska storms out suddenly, telling his father he can die for all he cares.

Lajoska throws himself into his work. We see extreme closeups of his work under a magnifying class as he prepares various animals for mounting. Back at the grocery store a few days later, Lajoska is buying a small amount of butter and chocolate; the fight with his father was probably the latest in a long series. The female clerk is gone, replaced by a man.

At Klmn's apartment, Lajoska realizes something is wrong. Having left the cage open after their terrible fight, the cats have attacked and killed Klmn, chewing a hole into his enormous gut. A string of entrails leads back into the cage where a pair of satisfied cats sit licking their chops.

Lajoska embalms his father, stuffing straw into his stomach through the holes the cats gnawed. We next see him strapped standing into an elaborate contraption in the basement of his workshop. Pumps slowly sigh, liquid flows through clear tubes, syringes dive into flesh, and trays of scalpels and other vicious medical instruments move past on articulated arms.

With the aid of mirrors, clamps and levers, Lajoska begins the exacting and painstaking work of eviscerating himself. There is no doubt as to his intentions and progress; we are shown in exacting detail scalpels slicing flesh, opening body cavities, removing organs. Lajoska guts himself in front of us.

With trembling hands, obviously exhausted from his work, Lajoska finally sews up his own sweating torso. Completing the taxidermy, he pushes a button and we see a razor-sharp blade crank slowly around to the front his neck. After a few calm breaths, the blade is released and via a spring it whips around behind, decapitating Lajoska. A moment later, a saw falls on his right arm, blood gushing as it's severed just below the shoulder.

We cut to the businessman returning to the shop. Unable to locate the proprietor, he goes into the back room and discovers, in the same paper bag, the completed work he requested of Lajoska: a glass globe containing a tiny human fetus. Satisfied, he is about to leave a stack of cash on the bench, when he changes his mind. Venturing further into the shop, he eventually makes his way down to the basement where he discovers Lajoska.

We cut immediately to the same businessman at an avant-garde art gallery, lauding the artistic genius of Balatony Lajoska. The glitterati are drinking champagne and eating hors dourves from a porcelain pig.

On display in the gallery are two exhibits: firstly: Balatony Klmn, resplendent in golden tights with a snarl of cat fur protruding from the hole in his magnificent belly, but primarily Balatony Lajoska - minus his head and right arm, standing casually naked with a stitched torso, looking more like a classical Greek statue than a man who mutilated himself.

r73731


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